Thursday, April 24, 2014

Mass Effect 3 Power Cooldown Time Chart

Mass Effect 3 Power Cooldown Time Chart

Mass Effect 3 calculates the cooldown time of powers as Base Time / (100% + Weapon Weight Adjustment + Recharge Bonuses).

The table below shows the effect of Cooldown bonuses on various base recharge times. The "%" column shows what percentage of normal cooldown time is achieved from the bonus.

  • Notice that after +200% (which you can get from having a light weapon loadout), cooldown bonuses typically translate into fractions of a second and are not significant except for powers with very long base cooldown times.
  • At around +150% or less, you will probably start having trouble detonating your own power combos unless your powers have a base speed of 4 to 6 seconds. Even so, damage output becomes severely reduced.
    • Therefore the Sentinel Tech Armor + Fortification build for 90% Damage Reduction and +60% Power Force and Damage a tricky option as a power build. The damage bonus is attractive, and you can still do a reasonable approximation with fast-recharge squad members, but you won't have the string of near-continuous chain power combos you can get with an Engineer.

Squad cooldowns are not affected by weapon weight, so they typically see more benefits from cooldown bonuses.

Cooldown Time
Bonus % 4 6 8 10 12 20 30
0% 100%        4.00        6.00        8.00      10.00      12.00      20.00      30.00
5% 95%        3.81        5.71        7.62        9.52      11.43      19.05      28.57
10% 91%        3.64        5.45        7.27        9.09      10.91      18.18      27.27
15% 87%        3.48        5.22        6.96        8.70      10.43      17.39      26.09
20% 83%        3.33        5.00        6.67        8.33      10.00      16.67      25.00
25% 80%        3.20        4.80        6.40        8.00        9.60      16.00      24.00
30% 77%        3.08        4.62        6.15        7.69        9.23      15.38      23.08
35% 74%        2.96        4.44        5.93        7.41        8.89      14.81      22.22
40% 71%        2.86        4.29        5.71        7.14        8.57      14.29      21.43
45% 69%        2.76        4.14        5.52        6.90        8.28      13.79      20.69
50% 67%        2.67        4.00        5.33        6.67        8.00      13.33      20.00
55% 65%        2.58        3.87        5.16        6.45        7.74      12.90      19.35
60% 63%        2.50        3.75        5.00        6.25        7.50      12.50      18.75
65% 61%        2.42        3.64        4.85        6.06        7.27      12.12      18.18
70% 59%        2.35        3.53        4.71        5.88        7.06      11.76      17.65
75% 57%        2.29        3.43        4.57        5.71        6.86      11.43      17.14
80% 56%        2.22        3.33        4.44        5.56        6.67      11.11      16.67
85% 54%        2.16        3.24        4.32        5.41        6.49      10.81      16.22
90% 53%        2.11        3.16        4.21        5.26        6.32      10.53      15.79
95% 51%        2.05        3.08        4.10        5.13        6.15      10.26      15.38
100% 50%        2.00        3.00        4.00        5.00        6.00      10.00      15.00
105% 49%        1.95        2.93        3.90        4.88        5.85        9.76      14.63
110% 48%        1.90        2.86        3.81        4.76        5.71        9.52      14.29
115% 47%        1.86        2.79        3.72        4.65        5.58        9.30      13.95
120% 45%        1.82        2.73        3.64        4.55        5.45        9.09      13.64
125% 44%        1.78        2.67        3.56        4.44        5.33        8.89      13.33
130% 43%        1.74        2.61        3.48        4.35        5.22        8.70      13.04
135% 43%        1.70        2.55        3.40        4.26        5.11        8.51      12.77
140% 42%        1.67        2.50        3.33        4.17        5.00        8.33      12.50
145% 41%        1.63        2.45        3.27        4.08        4.90        8.16      12.24
150% 40%        1.60        2.40        3.20        4.00        4.80        8.00      12.00
155% 39%        1.57        2.35        3.14        3.92        4.71        7.84      11.76
160% 38%        1.54        2.31        3.08        3.85        4.62        7.69      11.54
165% 38%        1.51        2.26        3.02        3.77        4.53        7.55      11.32
170% 37%        1.48        2.22        2.96        3.70        4.44        7.41      11.11
175% 36%        1.45        2.18        2.91        3.64        4.36        7.27      10.91
180% 36%        1.43        2.14        2.86        3.57        4.29        7.14      10.71
185% 35%        1.40        2.11        2.81        3.51        4.21        7.02      10.53
190% 34%        1.38        2.07        2.76        3.45        4.14        6.90      10.34
195% 34%        1.36        2.03        2.71        3.39        4.07        6.78      10.17
200% 33%        1.33        2.00        2.67        3.33        4.00        6.67      10.00
205% 33%        1.31        1.97        2.62        3.28        3.93        6.56        9.84
210% 32%        1.29        1.94        2.58        3.23        3.87        6.45        9.68
215% 32%        1.27        1.90        2.54        3.17        3.81        6.35        9.52
220% 31%        1.25        1.88        2.50        3.13        3.75        6.25        9.38
225% 31%        1.23        1.85        2.46        3.08        3.69        6.15        9.23
230% 30%        1.21        1.82        2.42        3.03        3.64        6.06        9.09
235% 30%        1.19        1.79        2.39        2.99        3.58        5.97        8.96
240% 29%        1.18        1.76        2.35        2.94        3.53        5.88        8.82
245% 29%        1.16        1.74        2.32        2.90        3.48        5.80        8.70
250% 29%        1.14        1.71        2.29        2.86        3.43        5.71        8.57
255% 28%        1.13        1.69        2.25        2.82        3.38        5.63        8.45
260% 28%        1.11        1.67        2.22        2.78        3.33        5.56        8.33
265% 27%        1.10        1.64        2.19        2.74        3.29        5.48        8.22
270% 27%        1.08        1.62        2.16        2.70        3.24        5.41        8.11
275% 27%        1.07        1.60        2.13        2.67        3.20        5.33        8.00
280% 26%        1.05        1.58        2.11        2.63        3.16        5.26        7.89
285% 26%        1.04        1.56        2.08        2.60        3.12        5.19        7.79
290% 26%        1.03        1.54        2.05        2.56        3.08        5.13        7.69
295% 25%        1.01        1.52        2.03        2.53        3.04        5.06        7.59
300% 25%        1.00        1.50        2.00        2.50        3.00        5.00        7.50

Monday, April 14, 2014

Mass Effect 3 Mission Rewards Summary

Mass Effect 3 Mission Rewards Summary (in progress)

Missions in capitals represent main story progress missions. Other missions are arranged by what missions can be acquired (i.e., they show in your Journal) after the preceding main plot mission is done.

Notes
  • Minor missions (e.g., those from overheard conversations on the Citadel) can be acquired but not necessarily completed immediately. We have arranged them according to when they can be completed.
  • If you pick up a weapon for the first time (as opposed to having a weapon assigned to you, such as when Anderson gives you an M-3 Predator in the Prologue), in a New Game+ you will get 2 free ranks unlocked, toward the maximum of rank X.
  • You may want to do the Citadel DLC after everything else, as an epilogue to your Mass Effect 3 gaming experience. To do so, be sure to save your game before starting Priority: Cerberus Headquarters.
    • The Citadel DLC will let you get the remaining mods to level V.
    • There are a lot of credits available, including a theoretically unlimited amount from the Armax Arsenal Arena and the Silver Coast Casino.
  • If you obtain a duplicate weapon mod, it will upgrade the weapon mod level by 1. After doing all available missions EXCEPT the Citadel DLC and Priority Earth, weapon mod levels for a first playthrough are V except the following:
    • SMG Power Magnifier II
    • Pistol Power Magnifier II
    • Pistol Ultralight Materials IV
    • Assault Rifle Thermal Scope II
    • Assault Rifle Ultralight Materials II
    • Shotgun Ultralight Materials II
    • Sniper Rifle High-Velocity Barrel II
    • Sniper Rifle Ultralight Materials II
  • Medi-Gel is converted into XP if you cannot carry any more. Medi-Gel is replenished every time you leave the ship for a mission or location, so once you have collected all Medi-Gel during a mission, you can use it without fear of missing out on XP.
Missions
  • PROLOGUE: EARTH - M-3 Predator, M-8 Avenger.
    • If you have any other weapons (either from a previous playthrough or given to yourself by console), every time you reload a game the Predator (and Avenger, if you have it) become your equipped weapons.

  • PRIORITY: MARS - M-4 Shuriken, M-23 Katana, M-92 Mantis, Ariake Technologies Gauntlets, Kassa Fabrication Chestplate, SMG Scope, SMG Ultralight Materials, Sniper Rifle Extended Barrel, Shotgun High Caliber Barrel, Sniper Rifle Concentration Mod, M-15 Vindicator, Shotgun Shredder Mod, Squad Member (Ashley or Kaidan, James, Liara).
    • You start with a weapon based on Shepard's class; the other weapons appear during the mission.

  • PRIORITY: THE CITADEL I - War Asset (Diana Allers), War Asset (Khalisah Bint Sinan al-Jilani), War Asset (Doctor Chakwas if she is asked to stay in R&D)
  • Apien Crest: Banner of the First Regiment - 5 rep, 15000 credits,  War Asset (Turian Sixth Fleet)
  • N7: Cerberus Lab - Sniper Rifle Enhanced Scope, Alien Medi-Gel Formula, 5 rep, 10000 credits, +10000 credits funding, War Asset (Cerberus Research)
  • Priority: Eden Prime (DLC From Ashes) - 5000 credits, Particle Rifle (from Javik), Squad Member (Javik); Javik cannot go on missions until after Priority: Palaven
    • Eden Prime: Resistance Movement - War Asset (Eden Prime Support)

  • PRIORITY: PALAVEN - M-97 Viper, M-27 Scimitar, Assault Rifle Piercing Mod, Hahne-Kedar Greaves, Pistol Piercing Mod, Armax Arsenal Shoulder Guard, Pistol Magazine Upgrade, Assault Rifle Magazine Upgrade, Sniper Rifle Spare Ammo Mod, Sniper Rifle Enhanced Scope, 12500 credits, +12500 credits funding, Squad Member (Garrus)
  • Aria: Blood Pack - War Asset (Terminus Fleet)
  • Aria: Blue Suns - War Asset (Terminus Fleet)
  • Aria: Eclipse - War Asset (Terminus Fleet)
  • Citadel: Aria T'Loak
  • Citadel: Alien Medi-Gel Formula - 1000 credits, War Asset (Hanar and Drell Forces)
  • Citadel: Leviathan (DLC Leviathan)
    • Find Garneau - Pistol Cranial Trauma System, SMG High-Velocity Barrel, Ultralight Pistol Materials, SMG Mass Pulse Recoil System.
    • Mahavid - SMG High-Velocity Barrel, Ultralight Pistol Materials, SMG Mass Pulse Recoil System, Pistol Cranial Trauma System.
    • Find Ann Bryson - Assault Rifle Omni-Blade, Husk head Captain's Cabin item.
    • Namakli - AT-12 Raider, SMG High-Velocity Barrel, SMG Mass Pulse Recoil System, Assault Rifle Omni-Blade, 12500 credits.
    • Despoina - Assault Rifle Omni-Blade, M-55 Argus, Pistol Cranial Trauma System, Ultralight Pistol Materials, 15000 credits, War Asset (Ann Bryson), War Asset (Leviathan Enthrallment Team).
  • Citadel: Hanar Diplomat - War Asset (Hanar and Drell Forces or Spectre Unit)
  • Grissom Academy: Emergency Evacuation - Assault Rifle Stability Damper, SMG Heat Sink, M-22 Eviscerator, M-96 Mattock, Mnemonic Visor, Assault Rifle Precision Scope, Sniper Rifle Piercing Mod, Biotic Amp Schematics, Serrice Council Chestplate, SMG Magazine Upgrade, 12500 credits, +12500 credits funding, War Asset (Alliance 103rd Marine Division or Biotic Company), War Asset (Citadel Defense Force)
    • Citadel: Biotic Amp Interfaces - 5 rep, 1000 credits, War Asset (Citadel Defense Force)
  • Ismar Frontier: Prototype Components - 90 xp
  • Omega: Aria T'Loak - Assault Rifle High-Velocity Barrel x3, Pistol Heavy Barrel x3, Shotgun High-Velocity Barrel x3, N7 Valkyrie, Sniper Rifle Thermal Scope x3, Shotgun Omni-Blade x3, Chakram Launcher, 60002 credits (see below), +15000 credits funding, War Asset (Alliance First Fleet or General Oleg Petrovsky), War Asset (Omega Eezo Hoard), War Asset (Omega Raiding Fleet)
    • Omega: Assist the Hacker, Omega: Assist the Mechanic - achievement
    • Mission start to Aria's Bunker - 15000 credits
    • Aria's Bunker to Talon Base - 15000 credits
      • Omega: Assist Harrot - 1800 credits (see below)
      • Harrot's Emporium appears after this mission, and has 50000 credits worth of weapon mods. The store will NOT appear in the Normandy requisitions after the mission.
    • Talon Base to Reactor - 15000 credits
    • Reactor to Afterlife - 15002 credits
      • 15000 appears to be the maximum between mission checkpoints; the 15000 here includes 1800 from Omega: Assist Harrot when you find the couch.
      • +1 token credit from each of two locations at the Talons front lines just before Afterlife:
        • In the Talons area, in the infirmary -- one of the machines
        • Near the taxi to the left of where you enter the Afterlife courtyard
  • Kite's Nest: Pillars of Strength - 5 rep, 15000 credits, War Asset (Batarian Fleet)
  • Shrike Abyssal: Prothean Obelisk - 5 rep, 20000 credits

  • PRIORITY: SUR'KESH - Assault Rifle Extended Barrel, Shotgun Blade Attachment, Shotgun Spare Ammo, Pistol High Caliber Barrel, Armax Arsenal Greaves, Sentry Interface, M-13 Raptor, Pistol Scope, Scorpion, 12500 credits, +12500 credits funding.
  • Attican Traverse: Krogan Team / Missing Scouts / Rachni - M-300 Claymore, Pistol High Caliber Barrel, SMG High Caliber Barrel, Shotgun Shredder Mod, Krogan Dying Message, Shotgun Spare Thermal Clip, Ariake Technologies Shoulder Guard, Pistol Piercing Mod, 12500 credits, +12500 credits funding, War Asset (Rachni Queen or Breeder), War Asset (Aralakh Company)
    • Citadel: Krogan Dying Message - 5 rep
  • Citadel: Barla Von - 5 rep,  War Asset (Shadow Broker Wet Squad)
  • Citadel: GX12 Thermal Pipe - 5 rep
  • N7: Cerberus Attack - Improved Power Grid ("old grid schematics"), Armax Arsenal Gauntlets, 10000 credits, +10000 credits funding, War Asset (Krogan First Division)
    • Citadel: Improved Power Grid - 5 rep, 1000 credits, War Asset (Alliance Fifth Fleet)
  • N7: Cerberus Abductions - Capacitor Helmet, 10000 credits, +10000 credits funding, War Asset (Arcturus First Division)
    • Benning: Evidence - 5 rep
  • Tuchanka: Turian Platoon - SMG Magazine Upgrade, M-9 Tempest, Sniper Rifle Spare Thermal Clip, SMG Ultralight Materials, Hahne-Kedar Chestplate, Shotgun Smart Choke, Sniper Rifle Extended Barrel, 12500 credits, +12500 credits funding
    • Tuchanka: Bomb - M-29 Incisor, Shotgun Blade Attachment, Rosenkov Materials Gauntlets, SMG Heat Sink, Pistol Scope, Sniper Rifle Concentration Mod, Pistol Melee Stunner, Turret Control Schematics, 12500 credits, +12500 credits funding, War Asset (Turian Blackwatch)

  • PRIORITY: TUCHANKA
  • N7: Cerberus Fighter Base - Pistol Magazine Upgrade, Heating Unit Schematics, 5 rep, 10000 credits, +10000 credits funding, War Asset (Advanced Fighter Squadron)
    • Citadel: Heating Unit Stabilizers - 5 rep, 1000 credits

  • PRIORITY: THE CITADEL II - Assault Rifle Piercing Mod, M-76 Revenant, Sniper Rifle Extended Barrel, Pistol Piercing Mod, M-25 Hornet, Securitel Helmet, Pistol High-Caliber Barrel, M-358 Talon, Sniper Rifle Piercing Mod, 12500 credits, +12500 credits funding
  • Arrae: Ex-Cerberus Scientists - Assault Rifle Magazine Upgrade, Shotgun High Caliber Barrel, poison designed for turians, Kassa Fabrications Greaves, M-6 Carnifex, SMG High Caliber Barrel, Sniper Rifle Piercing Mod, Shotgun Spare Thermal Clip, 12500 credits, +12500 credits funding, War Assets (Ex-Cerberus Scientists, Dr. Brynn Cole, Jacob, Dr. Gavin Archer)
    • Citadel: Cerberus Turian Poison - 5 rep, 1000 credits, War Asset (Turian Sixth Fleet)
  • Athena Nebula: Hesperia-Period Statue - 15000 credits, War Asset (Alliance Engineering Corps)
  • Citadel DLC
    • Citadel: Shore Leave
    • Citadel: Ambush - M-11 Suppressor, Pistol Power Magnifier, Assault Rifle Ultralight Materials, Sniper Rifle Ultralight Materials, 15000 credits, +15000 credits funding
    • Citadel: Identity Theft
    • Silver Coast Casino: Infiltration - 15000 credits, +15000 credits funding
    • Citadel: Identity Theft II
    • Citadel Archives: Escape - Shotgun Ultralight Materials, SMG Power Magnifier, M-7 Lancer, Sniper Rifle High-Velocity Barrel, Sniper Rifle Ultralight Materials, Assault Rifle Ultralight Materials, 15000 credits
    • Citadel Docks: Retake the Normandy - Sniper Rifle Ultralight Materials, Shotgun Ultralight Materials, Assault Rifle Thermal Scope, mug in CIC area (+3 credits), 15000 credits, +15000 credits funding
    • Citadel Arena: Geth Challenge - SMG Power Magnifier
    • Citadel Arena: Unusual Scores - Sniper Rifle High-Velocity Barrel, Pistol Power Magnifier, Assault Rifle Thermal Scope
    • Armax Arsenal Arena - Score over 9999 points to receive one of: Cerberus Spirit Armour OR Cerberus Shade Armour OR Cerberus Nightmare Armour
  • Citadel: Batarian Codes - 210 xp, War Assets (Batarian Fleet)
  • Citadel: Cerberus Automated Turret Schematics - 5 rep, 1000 credits, War Asset (Citadel Defense Force)
  • Citadel: Cerberus Retribution - 5000 credits
  • Citadel: Inspirational Stories - 5 rep, 210 xp, 5000 credits
  • Citadel: Library of Asha - 5 rep, 15000 credits, War Asset (Asari Sixth Fleet)
  • Citadel: Medical Supplies - 5 rep, 375 xp, Intel (Med Bay Surgery), Upgrade (Efficiency Increase Medi-Gel or Capacity Increase Medi-Gel)
  • Citadel: Medi-Gel Sabotage - Effective Military Strength
  • Citadel: Volus Ambassador - 5000 credits, War Assets (Zaeed Massani, Volus Bombing Fleet, -Turian Sixth Fleet)
  • Citadel: Wounded Batarian - 5 rep, 5000 credits
  • Irune: Book of Plenix - War Assets (Citadel Defense Force)
  • Kallini: Ardat-Yakshi Monastery - Pistol Melee Stunner, Intel (Gallae's Electronic Signature), Sniper Rifle Spare Thermal Clip, Disciple, Serrice Council Shoulder Guard, Assault Rifle Precision Scope, 12500 credits, +12500 credits funding, War Asset (Asari Commandos, Samara)
    • Citadel: Asari Widow - 5 rep
  • Valhallan Threshold: Prothean Data Drives - 5 rep, 15000 credits, War Asset (Alliance Engineering Corps)

  • PRIORITY: PERSEUS VEIL

  • PRIORITY: GETH DREADNOUGHT - Shotgun Smart Choke, Arc Pistol, Sniper Rifle Enhanced Scope, Archon Visor, Geth Pulse Rifle, SMG Scope, Assault Rifle Precision Scope, 12500 credits, +12500 credits funding
  • Citadel: Kakliosaur Fossil - 5 rep, 15000 credits, War Asset (Krogan Clans)
  • N7: Fuel Reactors - 10000 credits, +10000 credits funding
    • Citadel: Chemical Treatment - 5 rep, 30 xp, 1000 credits, War Asset (Alliance First Fleet)
  • Rannoch: Admiral Koris - Assault Rifle Magazine Upgrade, Shotgun Shredder Mod, SMG Magazine Upgrade, Jamming Tower Data, 12500 credits, +12500 credits funding, War Asset (+Admiral Koris or -Quarian Civilian Fleet)
    • Citadel: Target Jamming Technology - 5 rep, 1000 credits, War Asset (Citadel Defense Force)
  • Rannoch: Geth Fighter Squadrons - Reaper Code Fragments, 12500 credits, Intel (Improved Geth Resistors, Miniaturized Armor Capacitors), War Asset (Geth Prime Platoon)
    • Citadel: Reaper Code Fragments - 5 rep, 1000 credits, War Asset (Asari Second Fleet)

  • PRIORITY: RANNOCH - SMG High Caliber Barrel, Kassa Fabrication Gauntlets, SMG Ultralight Materials, Assault Rifle Stability Damper, Geth Plasma Shotgun, 25000 credits, +25000 credits funding
  • Dekuuna: Code of the Ancients - 5 rep, 15000 credits, War Asset (Citadel Defense Force)
  • Dekuuna: Elcor Extraction - 5 rep, 120 xp
  • Hades Nexus: Obelisk of Karza - 5 rep, 15000 credits, War Asset (Alliance Engineering Corps)
  • Hades Nexus: Prothean Sphere - 5 rep, 15000 credits, War Asset (Alliance Engineering Corps)
  • Silean Nebula: Rings of Alune - 5 rep, 15000 credits, War Asset (Citadel Defense Force)

  • PRIORITY: THE CITADEL III

  • PRIORITY: THESSIA - Umbra Visor, Shotgun High-Caliber Barrel, Sniper Rifle Concentration Mod, M-98 Widow, Assault Rifle Extended Barrel, SMG Heat Sink, 15000 credits, +15000 credits funding
  • N7: Communication Hub - Cerberus codes (Cerberus Ciphers), Ariake Technology Greaves, 5 rep, 10000 credits, +10000 credits funding, War Asset (Communications Array)
    • Citadel: Cerberus Ciphers - 5 rep, 1000 credits

  • PRIORITY: HORIZON - Pistol Scope, Rosenkov Materials Shoulder Plate, M-12 Locust, Shotgun Blade Attachment, M-99 Saber, 15000 credits, +15000 credits funding
No more side missions can be undertaken once Priority: Cerberus Headquarters is begun.
  • PRIORITY: CERBERUS HEADQUARTERS 25000 credits, +55000 credits funding.

  • PRIORITY: EARTH


Thursday, April 10, 2014

Mass Effect 3 Class Build - Engineer (on Insanity Difficulty)

Mass Effect 3 Class Build Guide - Engineer (for Insanity Difficulty)

Powers
Incinerate, Cryo Blast
Overload, Sabotage
Combat Drone, Sentry Turret
Tech Mastery
Fitness

Anti-Shield: Overload
Anti-Barrier: Overload
Anti-Armor: Incinerate
Anti-Regeneration: Incinerate
Anti-Melee: Combat Drone, Sabotage
Anti-Blocking: Combat Drone
Recommended Bonus Power: Control Build: Dominate or Biotic Support Build: Slam.
Theoretically Interesting Power Build: Fortification or Defense Matrix.

With a broad array of non-redundant powers, the Engineer is probably the most interesting and versatile character who can make the most of the skill points over 60 levels. In Mass Effect 3, powers that affect Shields also affect Barriers (but not vice versa, so Biotics are weak against Shields), so the Engineer has all defenses covered. The big damage multipliers the class can get make it very strong against mini-bosses, short of spamming grenades (which Engineers do not have). More so than any other class, the Engineer can clear enemies without firing a single shot.

Aim for fast cooldowns and setting up your own Chain Power Combos by alternating Overload and Incinerate. Overload is one of the best choices to start because it is basically instant and briefly stuns the enemy, whereas Incinerate and Cryo Blast have to fly to the target, which not only adds a delay but they can be dodged. When you get Sabotage to rank 6, then you will start combat with that on tougher enemies; on weaker ones, two powers plus detonation is generally good enough to kill them.

In the early game, reduce your weapon loadout to get the maximum +200% cooldown bonus, which reduces your cooldown to 1/3rd normal. Ignore rank 2 of all powers for the moment since an additional +25% has very little effect if you already have +200%. The difference is 1/3.25 of normal cooldown versus 1/3.00 normal.

For skills, take a minimum set for Priming and Detonation at rank 1 (Overload + Incinerate), then develop Tech Mastery before going back to increase the ranks of attack powers because Tech Mastery (and Sabotage rank 6 Tech Vulnerability) will also increase Power Combo damage, whereas damage bonuses specific to a power do not, unless the evolution specifically refers to combo detonations.
  • Recommended sequence: Incinerate 1, Overload 1, Combat Drone 1, Dominate 1, Sabotage 1, Tech Mastery 6, Incinerate 6, Sabotage 6, Fitness 6, Overload 6. Move Fitness up if you are having difficulty and relying on medi-gel, although in the general case you should be able to avoid needing it badly.
Incinerate
  • Arcs around cover.
  • Your basic attack, although it can be dodged.
    • Start with Overload to stun an enemy, then follow with Incinerate.
    • Enemies that are already in cover are better targets for Incinerate because they are less likely to dodge. Although you can reduce the effectiveness of dodging with the rank 4 Radius evolution, you can already circumvent it by using Overload first and getting an area effect blast with a Power Combo.
Cryo Blast
  • Arcs around cover. Slow Priming. Cannot Detonate. Blocked by Protection.
    • A target is paralyzed but not Primed for a Cryo Explosion until it has completely frozen about 1 second after being affected by the power.
      • This power gives you the longest amount of time to Detonate, at the cost of no initial damage to the target: Cryo Blast does not do damage on its own, just freezing or slowing.
      • For best results, wait until it is falling over to hit it with a power.
  • Once frozen, a target cannot be usefully Slammed because Slam doesn't rise off the ground far enough. You will still get Cryo Detonation damage, however, and at ground level where it is more likely to catch someone in the blast radius.
  • Very low priority:
    • Overload will do damage, primes the target immediately, and reliably stuns a target.
    • Cannot Detonate, so you cannot chain-detonate a target in the same way you can by alternating Overload and Incinerate.
    • Even opening with Cryo Blast to try to freeze a clump of enemies is problematic because of the delayed Priming.
Overload
  • Instant.
  • One of two Instant Powers available to the Engineer and typically the first attack to use until rank 6 Sabotage is obtained.
    • If the enemy dodges too many of your attacks, use this because it is too fast to react by dodging. The brief stunning effect then gives you a window to Detonate the target some other way, such as Incinerate, which can otherwise be dodged.
  • Also good to detonate a faraway target when Incinerate might not fly there before the Priming ends.
  • For ranks 4-6 we recommend Chain Overload, Neural Shock, and Chain Overload.
    • Shield/Barrier damage is already very high, so maximize Incinerate damage instead and use Overload for stunning.
    • Neural Shock increases damage to organic barriers/shields by +300%, and causes them to fall.
    • The chain effect will strike a target that is out of your line of sight. Damage is less (60%) but being out of line of sight of that target generally means absolute safety. No Neural Shock on chain targets.
      • Use this to finish off multiple weakened enemies.
Sabotage
  • Instant. Limited Priming. Cannot Detonate.
  • Sabotage hacks synthetics but damages non-synthetics by overheating their weapons (whether they have a weapon or not). This latter effect is the "backfire", which occurs about 1.5 seconds after the power hits and does 150% listed damage against shields. This backfire can Prime a target for a Tech explosion.
  • Sabotage does work on very high-value dangerous targets such as Cerberus Engineer turrets and Atlas mechs that can output a lot of damage very quickly. Sabotage therefore acts as both instant defence and attack at the same time.
  • Initially low priority for this power because it is quite specialized and damage is delayed against non-synthetics.
    • However, definitely get at least 1 rank for the ability to stop a synthetic immediately. Even if there are no enemies for it to attack, you can at least get shots in without facing retaliation. Remember that enemies build resistance against it, so if you want to use it to "paralyze" an enemy, be ready to concentrate fire.
  • Because Sabotage does do good damage against shields, prioritize developing this before Overload, especially if you want to race for the rank 6 Tech Vulnerability evolution, which gives an incredible +100% damage bonus that will also apply to the backfire from the Sabotage that inflicted the vulnerability.
    • If you absolutely need fast damage output then Incinerate is the better choice for early development because Tech Vulnerability is so far away. If you can handle yourself in combat and/or there are no time-sensitive combat scenarios, then try to forgo Fitness and aim for Tech Vulnerability.
Combat Drone
  • Cannot Prime. Limited Detonation.
    • Detonates Primed targets only when it explodes under the Rank 4 Detonate evolution.
  • Appears behind a target if a target is specified, and it typically causes them to turn around. Ceberus Guardians would therefore have their shield facing the wrong way. The targeted Guardian then starts turning around, exposing their side or rear to attack.
  • Lasts until destroyed.
  • High priority for enemies that shoot, so it can potentially be used to draw grenades from enemies. Ignored by melee enemies.
  • Ignores obstacles/cover as long as an enemy is selected, even if the enemy is not in line of sight or behind an obstacle such as an unbreakable window.
  • Tends to move in close, unless it has the Rocket Launcher evolution.
  • Very fragile on Insanity Difficulty, even with all shielding evolutions. Therefore, priority is very low.
  • Great for protecting yourself from Swarmers because Swarmers are very fragile, so the small amount of damage from even a rank 1 Drone is enough to kill them and cover your position.
  • Seems to be ignored by Cerberus Engineer Turrets.
Sentry Turret
  • Can Prime if it has the Cryo Ammo evolution.
  • Lasts until destroyed.
  • High priority for enemies, so it can potentially be used to draw grenades from enemies.
    • Deploy far on your flank so that grenades thrown at it will not force you to move.
    • Try to support it with a Combat Drone in the enemy's midst and drawing fire.
  • Both Combat Drone and Sentry Turret are very fragile on Insanity Difficulty. Focus on one and keep the other at a low rank. Combat Drone is generally the better choice because the Sentry Turret is immobile.
  • Best used against single (or very few) targets who can't or won't divide their attention to destroy the Turret. Even if they do destroy it, the fast cooldown means you can create another one almost immediately.
Tech Mastery
  • For ranks 4-6 we recommend Power Damage, Damage and Capacity, and  Power Mastery.
  • Maximize this early for +85% damage to all powers, then develop either Incinerate or Sabotage.
Fitness
  • Melee is extremely dangerous on Insanity Difficulty, so instead of trying a melee build, for ranks 4-6 we recommend Durability, Shield Recharge, and Durability.
Control Build: Dominate
  • Taking Dominate as the Bonus Power combines well with Combat Drone and Sentry Turret for eliminating the enemy with very little exposure to return fire.
    • All three powers can draw fire and have a "fire-and-forget" aspect: An Engineer can stay in cover or around the corner in another area, fully protected from enemy fire while a Dominated target, a Combat Drone, and/or Sentry Turret continue to attack the enemy.
    • It completes the Engineer's complement of powers that attack and distract the enemy. Other options include Decoy and Defense Drone, both of which have limited range and except in special circumstances, less utility.
  • Works against protected targets so you can start it right away in combat to break up enemy ranks.
  • Only a few special enemies are immune. Works even on mini-boss level enemies like Brutes, making it a great power to quickly give yourself breathing room if an enemy closes on you.
  • If there are no available targets for the Dominated target, it stands still and therefore can easily be targeted with head shots.
  • If you take the Overload rank 5 Neural Shock evolution, you might consider dropping Dominate since it will get you a fairly long-duration incapacitation of the target.
  • Once you have Incinerate and Overload to rank 6 (and especially if you also have Sabotage rank 6 Tech Vulnerability), you will probably find that you can efficiently kill enemies quickly, reducing the frequency with which you use Dominate and the value of the Power. In such a case, getting even more damage with the Fortification option means a more generally useful Bonus Power choice.
    • Where Dominate really shines is in the rare crisis scenarios where enemies are aggressively closing on your location. Dominate can force them to pause their advance while they deal with the turncoat in their midst. Combined with damage-to-target evolutions and you have a combo attack/distraction power.
Biotic Support Build option: Slam
  • If you find Dominate and Sabotage too cheesy, you can try Slam as your bonus power. The basic power set for an Engineer cannot Detonate Biotics, so something that can Detonate biotic attacks can be useful IF you are with biotic teammates.
  • Instantly hits but effect delayed. Cannot Prime. Detonates all types of Primed targets. Detonate occurs only when the target is fully lifted. Cannot affect armored targets.
    • Delayed Detonation this means that most Engineer Priming will have expired by the time the target has been lifted. You can use it to detonate someone else's tech attack Priming, such as EDI's, but it is more likely that Slam will be used only to detonate Biotics.
    • Cryo Blast is the exception, BUT once frozen, Slam can't lift them high enough for appreciable damage. You will still get the Cryo Blast after the lift duration is over, and you will get a near ground-level blast, but hardly any damage from the Slam itself because the target wasn't lifted high enough.
  • On its own, Slam is a strong attack with a very fast cooldown (4 seconds base, compared with Incinerate and Overload which are 8 seconds base) and can make a decent primary attack with good target-neutralizing effects (the target has to get to its feet after the Slam). In the early game, if you can Slam the target for strong damage, you may consider using it exclusively instead of Incinerate (which can be dodged) or Overload (which is weak except against Shields and Barriers).
Power Build: Fortification / Defense Matrix
  • On higher difficulties this is a late game because the recharge speed penalty may be too annoying and can make detonating combos trickier. Try it to see if it cramps your style too much. More of a theoretical build.
  • For an Engineer, Fortification gives 25% damage reduction and +30% Power Damage/Force (at rank 5) in exchange for -50% recharge speed (-20% at rank 6). Keep it up at all times, combined with +200% recharge speed from a very light weapon loadout.
  • Defense Matrix gives you less bonuses and a slightly longer cooldown, but the option to instantly restore some of your shields.
    • The shield restoration is generally not vital if you are careful, so the bigger bonus from Fortification is recommended.
    • The 10% higher cooldown difference is generally trivial after a +200% cooldown bonus from a light weapon loadout.
  • Instead of maximizing Fitness first, maximize Fortification or Defense Matrix, and just keep the power active.